Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Chocolate Raspberry Trifle

I hope upon seeing the title of this post you weren't expecting a large and glorious trifle, with layers upon layers of feather-light chocolate gemoise, thick creamy creme anglaise, and bright red raspberries. 'Cause mine is a little more rustic than the photo in the book.

chocolate raspberry trifle

August 7, 2011
Name of Cake: Late July Trifle
Occasion: HCB, and raspberry season
Constituents: moist chocolate genoise, creme anglaise, leftover raspberry coulis (in place of raspberry jam), and fresh raspberries. and raspberry whipped cream.

A normal-sized trifle feeds about 20 people, and since I wasn't feeling like rounding up 20 people I halved the recipe. The trouble with halving a trifle recipe is finding an appropriate receptacle for the thing. I chose a glass food storage container which was a little too wide and a little too short. So what I'm trying to say is my trifle has only three layers and the creme anglaise seeped all down between the cake and the side of the container. Oh well. So much for pretty trifle pictures!

chocolate raspberry trifle

Despite not looking so hot, the trifle tastes amazing!

This trifle involves lots of steps:
  1. chop, melt, and cook dark chocolate for the genoise, let cool
  2. make the 2 layers of genoise, let cool
  3. make a sugar syrup for the genoise, let cool
  4. make creme anglaise, let cool
  5. remove the top crust and torte both genoise layers
  6. spread raspberry jam, or in my case leftover raspberry coulis from the wedding on one side of the cakes
Then comes trifle assembly:
  1. place cake layer jam side down in your trifle dish
  2. syrup the other side of the cake in the dish
  3. pour over some creme anglaise
  4. scatter some raspberries
And lather, rinse, repeat.

chocolate raspberry trifle

Gosh, when written out like that it looks really easy! Even though there are a lot of steps, they are all easy steps. The hardest part was being patient with all these cooling down shenanigans. I distracted myself by making dinner. A good distraction, with enjoyable results (most of the time).

The assembled trifle gets covered airtight and left in the refrigerator overnight to sort itself out. I have become a firm believer in letting cakes get a good rest to sort themselves out.

chocolate raspberry trifle
check out the larger version of this shot; i got good detail on the raspberry!

After letting the trifle do its sorting, the raspberry whipped cream is made. Basically you whip up cream, sugar, and raspberry jam until you get a cute pink topping that makes the trifle look adorable. Here's my advice bakers: if you want your cake to look adorable frost it with pink tinted frosting.

I discovered that taking a photo of a serving of trifle is difficult, as the insides are scooped out and plated. This scooping action just smears the frosting and creme anglaise all over the place and makes your trifle photograph like a dead animal. Check it out:

chocolate raspberry trifle

I tried again, and it came out marginally better:

chocolate raspberry trifle
At least its insides aren't spilling out like Skywalker's tauntaun

But at least you can see the layers. And never mind how it looks, just know that it tastes wonderful. Rose mentions in the header for this recipe that this dessert is deceptively light, making it suitable even after a heavy dinner. I agree that is deceptively light and very flavorful; the creamy vanilla creme anglaise, the tart strawberries, and the mellow chocolate genoise are a perfect combination. Although I agree with others who said the St Honore Trifle is the better of the two, don't skip this trifle when raspberries are in season!


  1. Yes I was expecting a beautiful trifle when I saw you posted, but you did not disappoint. That 1st photo with the backlight is beautiful. And I love seeing the creme anglaise seep through - makes me want to grab a straw, poke it in there, and slurp! The up close and personal shot of the raspberries is also gorgeous (I can see the little "hair" thingys). I agree that St. Honore is better but this one is a close 2nd.

  2. Aha! I knew you were going to toy with us with the title, because well, after baking along with you, for the past year, I got my eye on you.. just like I got my eye on this! WOW, even in it's small package it packs a punch - beautiful... and this coming from someone with adversity to fruit in sweets! Love all of the pictures.

  3. It looks beautiful and delish!

  4. Also, this might make me really lame, but I can't see a trifle without thinking of that Friends episode: "Custard: good. Jam: good. Meat: gooood"

  5. Amanda, should also add "What's not to like?" I think Joey said that at the beginning.

    I love Friends and that episode is hilarious!

  6. Jenn, thanks!! I'm glad you like the first photo. i was hard to get a pretty shot.

    Monica, are you gonna make this?? It has fruit in it! You should, though, because it is that good.

    Amanda, thanks! This trifle is all good.

  7. Anonymous9/8/11 14:15

    Beautiful photos. I really loved this trifle and your raspberry cream looks lovely. I remember how amazing the whipped cream tasted with the raspberry in it. It's such a pretty little thing too with the pinks and browns and yellows.

  8. Melissa, you are right, the colors do make this a very pretty trifle. Perfect for a little princess party!

  9. ב''ה

    Looks delicious. Great pictures. Floresent raspberries. LOL on the tautaun reference. I wouldn't mind having one of these when lost in the wilderness with stormtroopers on the trail...

  10. Mendy, thank you! I was counting on you to get the tauntaun reference, hooray!

  11. Yummy! I love the way the raspberry cream looks-- that close-up shot reminds me of a smurf cake. Cast your mind back. ( It's easier for me cuz I own Smurfs on DVD. :-D ) it just looks happy, this trifle!

  12. Raiuchka, I had to google image smurfs cake until I found a figurine holding a domed shaped cake with drippy icing. Nice! Do you own all the episodes on DVD? I always felt bad for the cat.

  13. The figurine is kinda close, but I was thinking more this: http://images.google.com/imgres?q=smurf+cake&hl=en&tbo=d&gbv=2&biw=768&bih=916&tbm=isch&tbnid=Ep5_n-0R5EtlWM:&imgrefurl=http://bluebuddies.com/Smurfs_Smurf_Scrapbooking.htm&docid=NvFr7tuNXbTaJM&w=400&h=300&ei=PeJdTqifJInXiAKO5pGzBQ&zoom=1

    So, fluffy with red berries on top, not the drips. :-). I have Season 1 on DVD -- my parents gave it to me for Xmas. E loves smurfs now, so we've had fun watching it together. We saw the movie last week. Not bad. Felt super bad for the cat in that. Recurring line from Gargamel: "Azrael, are you dead?" Hank Azaria made an awesome Gargamel.

  14. Ah! We could make something similar to that, you know. But I'm not painting myself blue to present it to you.

    I will always remember Hank Azaria as the Blue Raja from Mystery Men.